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Q. cemen n. “the earth; earth” (Category: Earth, Land)

Q. cemen, n. “the earth; earth, [ᴹQ.] soil” (Category: Earth, Land)
ᴱQ. sar “earth, soil”

Tolkien often used this Quenya word for “the Earth”, but in notes on Words, Phrases and Passages from The Lord of the Rings from the late 1950s or early 1960s, he clarified that “kemen ‘the Earth’ [was] an apparent flat floor under menel [the Heavens]” (PE17/24). In The Etymologies of the 1930s, ᴹQ. kemen was glossed “soil, earth” (Ety/KEM), and ᴱQ. kemen had these same glosses in Early Qenya words lists from the 1910s and 20s (PE16/139; PME/46; QL/46). Thus it seems this term can be used of both “earth” in the ordinary sense of “soil” as well as “the earth”, but in the latter usage it referred more specifically to the habitable surface of the world rather than the entire planet, serving as its “floor” as opposed to the “roof” which was menel. More common terms for the entire world were Ambar and Arda.

Conceptual Development: As indicated above, Tolkien introduced this term in the 1910s, already as a derivative for the root ᴱ√KEME, and it retained this form and meaning thereafter.

References ✧ MR/387, 471; PE17/24; SA/kemen; SDI2/Kemen; VT43/17; VT44/34; VT47/11

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cemende locative; assimilated “*on earth” ✧ VT43/17
cemenze locative; assimilated “*on earth” ✧ VT43/17
cemesse locative; assimilated “*on earth” ✧ VT43/17
kemende locative; assimilated   ✧ VT44/34

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ᴹQ. kemen n. “soil, earth; Great Lands” (Category: Ground, Soil)

See Q. cemen for discussion.

References ✧ Ety/KEM; RC/671; SD/402

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ᴹ√KEM > kén [kēm] > [kēn] ✧ Ety/KEM

ᴱQ. kemen n. “soil, earth” (Category: Ground, Soil)

See Q. cemen for discussion.

References ✧ LT1A/Kémi; PE16/139; PME/46; QL/46

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ᴱ√KEME > kemen [kemen] ✧ QL/46

ᴱQ. kemi n. “earth, soil, land” (Category: Earth, Land)

An Early Qenya word derived from the root ᴱ√KEME and translated “earth, soil, land” in the Qenya Lexicon of the 1910s (QL/46) and as “earth, soil” in Poetic and Mythological Words of Eldarissa from this same period (PME/46). While this form and derivation are compatible with Tolkien later notions of the Elvish languages, I think it is better to use the later terms cemen for “earth, soil” and nór for “land”.

References ✧ GL/42; LT1A/Kémi; PME/46; QL/46

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ᴱ√KEME > kemi [kemī] > [kemi] ✧ QL/46